GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The man convicted of murdering 31-year-old Ashley Young and mutilating her body afterward will effectively spend the rest of his life in prison.
JUDGE: ‘YOU ARE CLEARLY A MONSTER’
Judge Mark Trussock called the case “extremely disturbing” before announcing the punishment for 30-year-old Jared Chance, which included 100 years to 200 years for second-degree murder without the eligibility of parole until he’s 130 years old.
“You sir, in my mind are a very evil individual. You are clearly a monster without any conscious whatsoever… and you should never be allowed free,” Trusock said.
“This is without question the worst case that I have ever been involved in,” Trusock said, mentioning the more than 200 homicide and murder cases he’s presided over.
“You seemed at times to derive pleasure from the testimony that was best described as gruesome,” the judge said.
Young was last seen alive Nov. 29 with Chance, visiting a hookah lounge and bar in Eastown. Chance’s neighbor discovered her torso on Dec. 2 in the basement of the Grand Rapids house where they rented apartments.
Forensic technicians testified that they found a box of body parts on the stairwell of the apartment building and human tissue and blood throughout Chance’s apartment. They also found a bloody reciprocating saw in Chance’s parents’ home in Holland, which Chance visited after Young’s disappearance.
After hearing testimony from his brother, Young’s mother, detectives, forensic experts, and a neighbor, a jury convicted Chance on all charges he faced, including second-degree murder, mutilation of a dead body, three counts of tampering with evidence and concealing the death of an individual.
MOM TO DAUGHTER’S KILLER: ‘YOU HAD NO RIGHT’
Chance faced Young’s father, stepmother, stepbrother, best friend and mother before he was sentenced. Young’s mother, Kristine Young, was the last to address Chance.
“When I was 18, I was told I would never have children by a doctor. I thank God he gave me the gift of Ashley, even though it was for a very short period of time, God gave me that gift. You had no right to take her from me! to take her from her family!” Kristine Young yelled, staring directly at Chance.
Kristine Young told her daughter’s killer that she now cries every day, constantly replays in her head her last conversation with Ashley Young and listens to a voicemail from her daughter to hear her voice and laugh.
“When your brothers, your parents, your sisters your girlfriend come to see you do they hug you? Do they,” Kristine Young shouted at Chance, with her hand on the box of her daughter’s cremains. “This is what’s left of my daughter. If I want a hug, I have to hug a box and close my eyes and pretend that she is hugging me back because you chose to murder her.”
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Ashley Young’s stepmother, Dana Nelson, focused most of her account on the unanswered questions from the murder — a motive, and Ashley Young’s missing remains.
“(I hope) no one has to hear the sound that I heard coming from Ashley’s mom the day she first, the first time she saw and was able to be with her daughter after she was murdered. After she was murdered. She only had her daughter’s torso and limbs,” she said, sobbing. “There was nothing I could do to comfort or console or take it away of fix it for her. Nothing.”
“Give her that peace. Tell her what happened that early morning of November 29 when Ashley’s life ended, and where the rest of her daughter Ashley is. Do the right thing today. And if you don’t do the right thing today by telling her mother, I hope you are tormented with your thoughts about what you did to our Ashley and you get no peace while sit in prison for the rest of your life,” Nelson added.
‘NOTHING BUT A COWARD’
Ashley Young’s father, Ambrose Gonude, also spoke for the first time during the case, calling Chance “nothing but a coward.”
“To you Jared all I can say is may you rot in hell… you’ve taken away something that can never be repaired and there’s no need for it,” Gonude said.
When asked if he wanted to speak, he simply said, “No.”
Young’s loved ones cheered as he was led out of the courtroom.
Chance rejected a plea deal on the eve of his weeklong trial last month. The plea would’ve given him a shot at parole in exchange for admitting to what he did with Oshtemo Township woman and her missing remains.
Chance’s parents, James and Barbara Chance are both charged with perjury and being an accessory after the fact in the mutilation and disinterment of a dead body. Their trials are scheduled for Jan. 6.